Belfast Telegraph

Everton boss Ronald Koeman confirms interest in Burnley's Michael Keane

Everton boss Ronald Koeman has declared his interest in Burnley defender Michael Keane.

Speaking on Monday afternoon ahead of Tuesday's 11pm transfer deadline, the Dutchman stressed Manchester United winger Ashley Young is not a player he is targeting.

But he admitted he has his eye on Keane - someone he has "heard" other clubs are closely monitoring as well.

When asked if the 24-year-old Clarets star, who was called up to the senior England squad for the first time in October, was among the players he was looking at, Koeman said: "Yes, he is one of that list, like some more defenders.

"But I heard he is on more lists, in different teams."

Everton are among several clubs to have been linked with Young, but when that name was put to him, Koeman firmly stated the 31-year-old was "not on the list."

The manager also said he was not looking right now for another back-up for striker Romelu Lukaku, suggesting Enner Valencia was sufficient cover.

Speaking more generally about the possibility of the Toffees - who have already added Ademola Lookman and Morgan Schneiderlin to their senior squad this month - making further signings before the deadline, Koeman was cagey.

He said: "We know what we want and if we don't get the players we want, we don't sign players to get numbers in in the squad.

"If we sign a player, it is really that player who brings what we don't have and who brings a lot of quality to the team.

"If it is not possible today or tomorrow, then we will wait to the summer, and that is more easy than in January."

Asked what his deadline-day plan would be, Koeman - whose team face Stoke away in the Premier League on Wednesday - said: "My job is to prepare the team for Wednesday. If anything happens, maybe a surprise, I don't know...

"But I'm focused on the training for tomorrow, the preparation for the game and to get a good result on Wednesday.

"Deadline is deadline, everybody knows, but I think you (the media) will be more busy than I am tomorrow!"

A player returning to Everton this week is midfielder Idrissa Gueye, with his involvement in the African Nations Cup having been ended by Senegal's elimination on Saturday - although Koeman said the midfielder will not be available for Wednesday's match.

Meanwhile, Bryan Oviedo and Darron Gibson have completed moves to Sunderland and 22-year-old Toffees defender Tyias Browning has moved to Preston on loan for the rest of the season - as well as signing a new two-and-a-half-year contract with the Goodison Park outfit.

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